Story of Light - first listening impressions
Impressions from my first listen:
The Story of Light - pretty decent. 4 stars. It took me a second to figure out that woman was speaking Russian cuz I had the volume down low and I thought I kept hearing "sushi."
Velorum - a great song. Tied for best song on the album. The bassline from 2:45 to 2:58 reminds me of "The Audience is Listening." This song is everything that makes Vai awesome. 4.5 stars.
John the Revalator - wat. 2 stars only because I was able to finish it. Will probably never listen to this song again unless I want to remind myself of how weird Steve Vai can be sometimes.
Book of the Seven Seals - jazzy blues meets gospel? I guess it's an ok song, just not anything I would ever listen to. 2 stars.
Creamsicle Sunset - Did it just get Hawaiian in here? A nice relaxing song. 3.5 stars.
Gravity Storm - Great example of Vai's weird but not too weird side. Is this the song his new pickups are named after? I'm not sure his guitar sound on this album would work for anyone other than Vai. Is that because of the pickups or because of the amp/effects/etc? This song is weird but I like it. It reminds me of when Vai's music started getting weird but without overdoing it. It would fit in on Alien Love Secrets. I don't even know how many stars to give this song.
Mullach a' tSi - It's the 7th song so it's not surprising that it's a ballad. A lot of volume swells. I think I would actually prefer the song without them. I was so busy trying to keep up with the volume that I couldn't enjoy the melody. Maybe this will change with repeated listens.
The Moon and I - The beginning before he starts singing reminds me of something from Fire Garden. I respect Vai as a musician but I've never been too crazy about his singing, although I liked Devin's vocals on Sex and Religion. Half of the time I'm thinking this song isn't going anywhere, and the other half of the time I'm like oh, that's a pretty groovy little solo he's playing. And this is another song where it's like ok, that's a cool guitar sound, but it would only work for Vai. There are bits and pieces of the solo that remind me of stuff from Passion and Warfare, which is always a good thing. This would probably be a good song to see live.
Weeping China Doll - I wasn't sure what to expect from the beginning... is this gonna be more Vai weirdness or is it going to turn into something awesome? It turned into something awesome. (Tied for) best song on the album. 4.5 stars.
Racing the World - Groovy right from the start. A chord progression to keep things interesting combined with a melody that fits. Seems like a song that would fit in well in Port Town of F-Zero (video game reference... a compliment, btw). Solid 4 stars. 4.5, even. Can we have a 3 way tie for best song on the album? Yeah, alright cool. The last solo bit reminds me of Satriani.
No More Amsterdam - An ok song. It's not great, but it's not Vai weird.
Sunshine Electric Raindrops - Starts off Van Halen style. Let's rock. A good Vai jam.
Overall, a few gems (no pun intended). I liked it better than I thought I would.